Live from the VIP.fund news desk, bringing you the latest updates from our community across the globe! We’ll be sharing regular news bulletins summarizing the activities, stories, and developments happening across our programs and locations.
Why now? Over the past months and since the COVID-19 outbreak, our community of youth, volunteers, mentors, fellows, donors, and supporters has grown exponentially.
As we grow, we’re maintaining our focus on a solid foundation of shared values and a common goal: to build a virtual community of like-minded individuals who believe in lifeong learning for all, youth empowerment, collaboration, and employing technology for change.
Our values are: Care, Commitment, Creativity, and Curiosity.
We invite you to learn, critique, spread our news, and collaborate with us.
- #New edSeed scholars: We welcome Khadija in her quest to conquer the emperor of all maladies: pediatric cancer. Welcome to the edSeed family, Khadija!
- #New edSeed scholars: Welcome, Jamil el Ibrik, Environmental Health Major at the American University of Beirut. Like Greta Thunberg, Jamil wants to challenge his leaders to take action to protect the environment and address the economic and environmental crisis.
#mentoring Our Peer2Peer program has a community of 27 students and mentors from around the world. Their shared interests include entrepreneurism, English, travel, life skills, music, drama, personal development, and economics. Our mentor list continues to grow and they include scholars from top universities around the world. Welcome to new U.S. mentors @Lana Hannineh from Seton Hall, @Tasha Toth from Southern New Hampshire University and @Dima Masri from Harvard!
– Scholars for Syria is proud to connect our two newest U.S. mentors with edSeed students:
– New edSeed mentors: Seton Hall University sophomore Lana Hannineh, a Syrian-American biology/pre-med major will be working with edSeed student Khadija Al-Alyan, also studying pre-med at Lebanese University and who aspires to be a pediatric oncologist.
– New edSeed mentors: Tasha Toth is a student at Southern New Hampshire University majoring in English language and literature with a minor in art history. Tasha is founder of The Book Smart Project, a community-based organization that collects and donates books to schools in the U.S. Tasha, fluent in English and Arabic, is working with Enas Al-Khaswni, a Project Turquoise scholar and fellow English major studying at Zarqa University in Jordan. Enas wants to be a translator and both of these young women share a passion for literacy and the English language.
– New edSeed mentors: Nawar Al-Hamwi, an edSeed scholar andone of 20 students to be accepted in the joint music certificate program between the Landesmusikakademie NRW and the Cologne University of Music in Germany – one of Europe’s oldest music academies – is now mentoring Ibrahim Hussein, a fellow edSeed scholar and film major in Gaziantep, Turkey.
We hope these collaborations will prove beneficial and enriching for these young scholars.
– #volunteering: International Volunteer Day mandated by the UN General Assembly, is held each year on 5 December as “a unique chance for volunteers and organizations to celebrate their efforts, to share their values, and to promote their work among their communities. Volunteerism is one of the most vital delivery mechanisms for social, environmental and economic transformation, ensuring a lasting impact with its ability to change people’s mindsets, attitudes and behaviours.”
Our organization is run almost exclusively by volunteers, from our board members to our advisors, fellows, mentors, and student buddies.This month, we’d like to thank @Suha Nabhan, @Bashar Alallawi, @Amna Abu Kharoub, and @Ahmad Kharoub for their time in focusing their unique talents toward our collective mission of empowering displaced youth.
– #webinars “Art and Human Rights as Means for Social Change’‘ was presented by Sawsan Darwaza, Ma’amal 612 in Jordan and curator of the Karama Festival for Human Rights. She discussed social activism in a space where art skills are used to promote ideas such as the rights of women and refugees. ”Art is a social intervention aiming at engaging reality to achieve the desired social change. We each have our own ways: music, writing, acting, making documentaries or feature films. Our genres overlap with sub-divisions that can be invented and reinvented. In fact, we have new forms of expression and new opportunities to choose our mode of expression.This is a privilege.”
– Salma Al-Shami, Senior Research Specialist at the Arab Barometer, Princeton University, presented our recent webinar on December 11 on the use of data in the social sciences. Participants learned about survey methods, design, guiding principles, definitions of concepts such as the margin of error, and how data is manipulated, among other things.
– VIP.fund is proud to announce three more organizations as part of our collaboration network: Kiron in Jordan, the Cairo Institute of Liberal Arts and Sciences in Egypt, and MAPs in Turkey. Two more organizations in Palestine will join our network soon.
– Mission accomplished! Routers and computers were delivered to Za’atari camp in Jordan on the eve of the lockdown. It took collaboration and cooperation across continents to get the job done. Thanks to our friends and partners at Jordan’s Zarqa University!
We welcome your feedback and suggestions. Share our news and tune in soon for more updates!